This is Why I Make a Test Garment

First let me say that I love to sew, however I have a lot of difficulty with patterns. It seems that most patterns are not meant for people who are six feet tall and voluptuous. I have learned that making a test garment is essential and today I will share exactly why.

I found this wonderful pattern for a vintage styled smock apron on sewmamasew, there is even a video tutorial showing how to put the pattern together and alter it plus sewing instructions. I put the pattern together and altered it by adding 1 inch to the front and 4 inches above the darts. I decided to use a Holly Hobby sheet that I got for a dollar as my test apron, hoping that everything would be perfect and I would have a cute apron and could then move on to the "real" fabric.
Lesson one - fabric is not always printed exactly on grain, if it is really off the design looks weird and you look crooked when wearing it.
Lesson two - when using a fabric with a large pictorial pattern make sure to center it properly, I did not and it makes the whole thing look wonky.It looks relatively okay on the hanger, if you look closely you can see that the pattern is slightly off center.Here you can see what I mean about the pattern being printed off grain. The top is straight and the bottom is straight, but the design seems to be sloping down to the right.
Lesson 3 - Adding an inch to the center front can make the neckline a bit to big.

I know that this is just an apron, but I don't want the neckline to be this wide. As you can also see it is a little snug in the armpit area, that can easily be reshaped, but I can't add fabric to the neckline.

I will now redraw the pattern, I will make the armholes bigger and the neckline narrower and maybe more scooped. Once I am finished with that I will cut into my expensive fabric and make my super smock apron. This version will not be finished and will be tossed into the scrap fabric pile and will not be spoken of again.

I do really like the style of this apron. I am planning to wear it out of the house to run errands and such. I have worked as a waitress for so long that it is easier to wear an apron that to carry a purse and will two little ones to keep up with I need both of my hands free. I hope to work on this more tonight, I have extra large rick rack for embellishing and a mile of bias tape just waiting to be applied, now I just need some really big paper.

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